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Publication numberUS3250911 A
Publication typeGrant
Publication dateMay 10, 1966
Filing dateFeb 7, 1964
Priority dateFeb 7, 1964
Publication numberUS 3250911 A, US 3250911A, US-A-3250911, US3250911 A, US3250911A
InventorsOldenburger Samuel C
Original AssigneeScovill Manufacturing Co
Export CitationBiBTeX, EndNote, RefMan
External Links: USPTO, USPTO Assignment, Espacenet
Pocket flashlight
US 3250911 A
Abstract  available in
Images(2)
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Claims  available in
Description  (OCR text may contain errors)

y 0, 1966 s. c. OLDENBURGER 3,250,911

POCKET FLASHLIGHT z Sheets-Sheet 1 Filed Feb. 7, 1964 I NVEN TOR. 54/1405; 6'. 0L oi/veue GEE;

y 0, 1966 s. c. OLDENBURGER 3,250,911

POCKET FLASHLIGHT Filed Feb. 7, 1964 2 Sheets-Sheet 2 INVEN TOR.

SAMUEL c. 0/. fiE/VBUA? G52,

United States Patent 3,250,911 PGCKET FLASHLIGHT Samuel C. Oldenburger, New York, N.Y., assignor, by mesne assignments, to Scovill Manufacturing Company, Waterbury, onn., a corporation of Connecticut Filed Feb. 7, 1964, Ser. No. 343,393 4 Ciaims. (Cl. Mil-10.65)

This invention relates to pocket flashlights, and more particularly to a pocket flashlight having a battery of the rechargeable type.

A main object of the invention is to provide a novel and improved pocket flashlight of the type provided with a rechargeable battery, said flashlight being relatively simple in construction, having a minimum number of parts, being very compact in size, and being easy to operate.

A further object of the invention is to provide an improved pocket flashlight of the type provided with a rechargeable battery, the flashlight being very inexpensive to manufacture, being durable in construction, being neat in appearance, and being arranged so that it does not require the use of a switch, but instead being operated by moving its bulb element.

A still further object of the invention is to provide an improved pocket flashlight of the type provided with a rechargeable battery, the flashlight being especially suitable for being carried in a ladies handbag or in a pocket, the flashlight assembly involving parts which can be readily manufactured by mass production methods, whereby the assembly can be fabricated with a minimum of cost, the flashlight being further adapted for use in conjunction with a key chain or other article carrier.

Further objects and advantages of the invention will become apparent from the following description and claims, and from the accompanying drawings, wherein:

FIGURE 1 is a perspective view, showing an improvedpocket flashlight according to the present invention engaged with a battery charging unit of the type adapted to be plugged into a household alternating current receptacle.

FIGURE 2 is a perspective view showing the manner in which the pocket flashlight unit is engaged with or disengaged from the battery recharging unit.

FIGURE 3 is a perspective view showing a pocket flashlight assembly of the present invention employed in conjunction with a supporting hook member for supporting the flashlight assembly inside a ladies hand bag or for supporting the flashlight assembly from any other suitable supporting means.

FIGURE 4 is an enlarged perspective view of the supporting hook member employed in FIGURE 3.

FIGURE 5 is an enlarged vertical cross sectional view taken substantially through the central longitudinal plane of the flashlight assembly of FIGURES 1, 2 and 3, said view being taken substantially on the line 5-5 of FIG- URE 6.

FIGURE 6 is a transverse vertical cross sectional view taken substantially on the line 6-6 of FIGURE 5.

FIGURE 7 is a fragmentary view, similar to FIG- URE 5, showing the upper portion of the flashlight assembly with the flashlight bulb moved to a deenergized position.

FIGURE 8 is an enlarged perspective view showing the resilient metal contact bracket engageable with the center contact of the lamp bulb of the flashlight assembly and also employed for moving the lamp bulb in a forward direction to the position of FIGURE 7.

FIGURE'9 is an enlarged perspective view of the resilient metal bracket member employed to clampingly underlie the shell portion of the lamp bulb in the flashlight assembly of FIGURES 1, 2, 3 and 5 to 7.

3,250,911 Patented May 10, 1966 Referring to the drawings, 11 generally designates a pocket flashlight constructed in accordance with the present invention. The flashlight 11 comprises a housing of insulating material, comprising a pair of opposing interlocking segments 12 and 13 of molded plastic material, or of similar molded insulating material, the segments being of generally rectangular shape and having the stepped interlocking edges 14 and 15- which are nestingly interengaged and which are fastened together by suitable cement. The top portions of the segments are provided with the stepped interlocking edges 14 and 15, as shown in FIGURES 5 and 6, the lower portions of the edges of the segments being flat, as shown at 16, and being cemented together.

The bottom portions of the opposing segments 12 and 13 are recessed, as shown at 17 and 18 and are formed with mating groove portions 19and 20 which receive the margins of an insulating plate member 21, of plastic, fibre, or other suitable insulating material, in which are secured a pair of parallel contact prongs 22 and 23 which extend parallel to the side walls of the recessed portions 17 and 18 andwhich terminate substantially at the bottom edge of the housing defined by the connected opposing segments 12 and 13.

The opposing segments are provided with aligning pins 24 and cooperating aligning recesses in which the pins are receivable, for example, the segment 13 is provided with the aligning pins, as shown in FIGURE 5, and the segment 12 is provided with the recesses adapted to receive said aligning pins, to insure proper alignment of the segments 12 and 13 when they are brought together to define a composite housing.

The housing segments 12 and 13 are formed at their intermediate portions with a relatively large opposing cavities 25 and 26 forming a compositive cavity shaped to snugly receive a rechargeable battery 27, which may be of generally circular shape, as shown in FIGURE 5, and which is engageable at widely spaced points of its periphery by at least three abutment elements 28, 29 and 30 formed in the housing segment 12.

The top marginal portions of the housing segments 12 and 13 are arcuately shaped, as shown at 31 and 32, whereby the joined arcuate top portions 31 and 32 of the housing define a channeled end wall spaced from the battery 27, whereby to define an elongated bulb-receiving recess. As shown in FIGURES 5 and 6, said bulb-receiving recess is open at the forward end of the recess, as shown at 33.

As shown in FIGURES 5 and 6, the recess defined by the joined arcuate wall members 31 and 32 is adapted to slidably receive a conventional flashlight bulb 34 having a sleeve-like metallic shell portion 35, employed as one terminal of the bulb, and having a rear center contact 36, employed as the other terminal of the bulb. Thus, the channeled recess is adapted to receive the bulb 34 in the position illustrated either in FIGURE 5 or FIGURE 7, with its head 37 exposed at the open forward end 33 of the recess.

The battery 27 is of the conventional type and is provided with a first casing terminal segment 38 which is generally circular and which forms one major face of the battery 27, the battery being provided with a second casing terminal segment 39, electrically insulated from the casing terminal segment 38, and covering substantially the entire remaining portion of the external surface of the battery, including its cylindrical periphery. As shown in FIGURE 5, the prong 22 is connected by a wire 40 to the battery casing terminal segment 38, and the prong 23 is connected by another wire 41 to the peripheral portion of the remaining casing terminal segment 39.

Designated at 42 is a generally L-shaped resilient metal bracket connected to the battery casing terminal segment at 43, 43, and arranged with its top arm 44 extending transversely across the channeled recess defined by the arcuate wall portions 31, 32,.in a position to clampingly underlie the shell portion 35 of the lamp bulb 34 received in the recess, and being slidably engageable with said shell portion, whereby to allow the bulb to be moved longitudinally in the recess. The arm 44 has a smooth surface bearing against the shell terminal 35 over a substantial portion of the length of the shell terminal, whereby the bulb is 'frictionally clamped between said arm 44 and the wall members 31 and 32 so as to permit axial sliding movement of the bulb in either direction. The resilient force of the arm'44 urges the bulb against the generally semi-cylindrically shaped top wall of the aforesaid recess, the segments 31 and 32 being formed with arcuate surface portions engageable with the shell portion 35 and being inwardly offset, as shown at 45, to provide clearance for the enlarged rim portion 46 of the bulb head 37.

The rear wall portions of the segments 12 and 13 are formed with registering rectangular notches 47 to define a rectangular aperture opposite the open end portion 33 of the housing. Designated at 48 is a second resilient metal bracket having a bottom portion 49 secured to the peripheral portion of the battery casing terminal segment 39 at 50', 50, the bracket member 48 extending vertically along the rear wall of the housing and being'formed with a generally rectangular corrugation 51 which projects outwardly and which is slidably received in the aperture defined by the registering notches 47. As shown in FIG- URE 8, the exposed face of the corrugation 51 is preferably knurled, as shown at 52. The top end of the bracket member 48 comprises the vertical contact lug 53 which is located rearwardly adjacent to the center contact 36 of the bulb 34 in a position to make electrical contact therewith, either when the bulb is pushed inwardly, namely, to

the right from the position thereof shown in FIGURE 7,

or when the resilient arm 48- is flexed inwardly, namely, to the left as viewed in FIGURE 7 by pushing inwardly on the knurled face 52.

As will be readily apparent, the bulb 34 may be energized in either of the above two ways. For example, the head of the bulb 34 may be pushed inwardly to move the bulb rearwardly from the position of FIGURE 7 to the position of FIGURE 5, wherein the center contact 36 engages the lug 53. This completes the energizing circuit for the bulb, whereupon the bulb is illuminated. The bulb remains illuminated until the bulb is pushed forwardly from the position of FIGURE to the position of FIGURE 7 by exerting inward force on the knurled face 52, moving the bulb to the position of FIGURE 7, where it becomes deenergized when the face 52 is released. This arrangement eliminates the necessity of providing a separate switch for controlling the energization of the bulb 34.

It will be noted from FIGURE 5 that when the bulb 34 is pushed inwardly, the center contact 36 flexes the lug 53 rearwardly to an inclined position, away from its normal vertical position. Rearward movement of the fiexi ble bracket member is limited by its engagement with the bottom edge of the aperture defined by notches 47. Therefore, there is a wiping action of the center contact 36 on the lug 53 as the lug is flexed rearwardly which assures good electrical contact and which prevents the accu mulation of dust or other foreign material on the cooperating contacting surfaces.

The clamping force exerted by the top arm 44 of bracket 42 is suflicient to hold the bulb in any of its adjusted positions namely, either in the energized position thereof shown in FIGURE 5 or in the deenergized position thereof shown in FIGURE 7. With the bulb in the position of FIGURE 7, it may be momentarily energized, if desired, by pressing the operating corrugation 51 inwardly to bring contact lug 53 into engagement with the center contact 36 of the bulb. If sustained energization of the bulb 34 is desired, the bulb is moved inwardly from the position of FIGURE 7 to the position of FIGURE 5 by exerting inward manual force on the head 37, as above described.

The battery 27 may be recharged, as desired, by connecting the unit to a conventional battery recharging device, shown at 60, of the type adapted to be plugged into a conventional alternating current female receptacle. Thus, the conventional recharging device 60 is provided with the upstanding lug 61 having female terminal contacts, the lug 61 being shaped to fit into the bottom recess defined by the opposing recessed portions 17 and 18 of the flashlight housing, and the prongs 21 and 22 being spaced to be received in the female contact elements associated with the lug 61. Thus, the flashlight may be engaged on the recharging unit 60 in the manner illustrated in FIGURE 1, and will be securely supported thereon 'while the battery 27 is being recharged. The unit 11 may be readily disengaged from the recharging member 60 by merely pulling it upwardly from the lug 61 in the manner illustrated in FIGURE 2.

The battery 27 may be also recharged from a suitable direct current source, for example, from a motor vehicle battery. Thus, a. suitable charging cord may be provided having a plug on one end and engageable in the cigarette lighter socket of an automobile and having a female plug on the other end receivable in the cavity defined by the mating recesses 17 and 18 and having contact sleeves conductively receiving the prongs 21 and 22 and connected to the cord conductors. A suitable resistor may be included, connected in series with one of the cord conductors, to reduce the charging current to a desired value.

The forward marginal portions of the housing segments 12 and 13 are formed with registering apertures 63 subjacent the bulb-receiving recess elements of the segments, the aligned apertures 63 being adapted to receive a conventional key chain 64, so that the flashlight unit may be carried on the key chain, along with various keys, if so desired.

The housing segment 12 is further formed with a slot 66 at its forward corner portion adapted to receive the resilient bottom leaf element 67 of an elongated hooked metal strap member 68 in the manner shown in FIG- URE 3. The hooked strap member 68 is provided at its top end with an enlarged resilient hooked portion 69 engageable over the top edge 70 of one side of a ladies handbag, as indicated in dotted view in FIGURE 3, whereby to enable the flashlight unit 11 to be supported in the inside of the handbag. The resilient leaf member 67 is of substantial length, so that it can be slipped inside the flashlight housing, clampingly engaging the inside surface of the main wall of segment 12, said main wall being thus clampingly received between the leaf member 67 and the main body portion of the supporting clip 68.

The lower portion of the housing segment 12 is further provided with a rectangular recess 71 which may be employed as a positioning recess or seat for a vanity mirror, photograph, or similar object. The recess 71 may also be employed to hold advertising display material, if so desired. The housing segments 12 and 13 are preferably made of molded plastic material, and may be of any desired color. Since the battery 2'7 is rechargeable, there is no need for replacing same, and it is thus possible to permanently secure the brackets 42 and 48 thereto in the positions illustrated in the drawings. Thus, these brackets are employed as supporting means for the bulb 34 and also as electrical contacting means therefor, eliminating the necessity of providing special switch means for controlling the energization of the bulb. It will be readily apparent that whenever the bulb burns out it can be readily replaced, since it can be easily removed from its recess by extracting same through the open portion 33 of the housing of the unit. A new bulb can easily be inserted into the bulb recess after the defective bulb has been removed.

While a specific embodiment of an improved pocket flashlight has been disclosed in the foregoing description, it will be understood that various modifications within the spirit of the invention may occur to those skilled in the art. Therefore, it is intended that no limitations be placed on the invention except as defined by the scope of the appended claims.

What is claimed is:

1. A pocket flashlight comprising an insulating housing, a battery secured in said housing and having two Spaced casing terminal segments insulated from each other, said housing having a channeled end wall spaced from said battery to define an elongated bulb-receiving recess and being open at the forward end of said recess to receive a bulb with its head exposed at said open forward end, a first resilient metal bracket connected to one casing terminal segment and having a portion extending transversely across said recess to slidably and clampingly engage the shell portion of a bulb positioned in said recess, said transversely extending portion having a smooth surface which bears frictionally against a substantial portion of the length of said shell portion, whereby the bulb is frictionally clamped between said tranverse portion and said channeled end Wall while permitting axial sliding movement of the bulb in either direction, said housing having an aperture opposite said open end of the recess, and a second resilient metal bracket secured to the other casing terminal segment and extending into the rear end of said recess to be engaged by the center contact of the bulb when the bulb is pushed inwardly, said second metal bracket having an actuating portion exposed at said last-named aperture whereby said second metal bracket may be pushed inwardly of the casing to force said bulb outwardly whereby contact will be broken when said actuating portion is again released.

2. A pocket flashlight comprising an insulating housing, a battery secured in said housing, said battery having respective metal outer casing portions insulated from each other and having respective poles connected to said metal casing portions, said housing being formed with a channel-shaped wall spaced from said battery to define a bulb-receiving recess, said housing being open at one end of said recess, a first resilient metal bracket conductively secured to one of said metal outer casing portions and having a flexible flange portion extending transversely in said recess, a lamp bulb having a conductive shell terminal and an end center contact, said bulb being positioned in said recess exposed at said one end, said flexible flange portion having a flat smooth surface bearing against the shell terminal over a substantial portion of the length of said shell terminal, whereby the bulb is frictionally clamped between said flange portion and said channel-shaped wall while permitting axial sliding movement of the bulb in either direction, said housing being formed with an aperture opposite said open end of the recess, and a second resilient metal bracket secured to the other metal outer casing portion of the battery and having an end contact element located to be engaged by said bulb center contact when the bulb is pushed inwardly, said second bracket having an actuating portion exposed at said aperture adapted to push said latter end contact element and bulb outwardly whereby contact will be broken when said actuating portion is again released.

3. A pocket flashlight comprising an insulating housing, a battery secured in said housing, said battery :having respective metal outer casing portions insulated from each other and having respective poles connected to said metal casing portions, said housing being formed with a channel-shaped wall spaced from said battery to define a bulb-receiving recess, said housing being open at one end of said recess, a first resilient metal bracket conductively secured to one of said metal outer casing portions and having a flexible flange portion extending transversely in said recess, a lamp bulb having a conductive shell terminal and an end center contact, said bulb being positioned in said recess with its :head exposed at said one end and with its shell terminal slidably and clampingly engaged by said flange portion and being urged thereby against said channel-shaped wall, said housing being formed with an aperture opposite said open end of the recess, a second resilient metal bracket secured to the other metal outer casing portion of the battery and having an end contact terminal located to engage said bulb center contact, said second bracket being formed with an outwardly direction generally channelshaped corrugation normally received in and exposed at said aperture, said housing being formed opposite said channeled end wall with a recess, and a pair of spaced parallel contact prongs secured to the housing in said last-named recess and being respectively electrically connected to said metal casing portions of the battery.

4. A pocket flashlight comprising an insulating housing, a battery secured in said housing and having two spaced casing terminal segments insulated from each other, said housing having a channeled end wall spaced from said battery to define an elongated bulb-receiving recess and being open at the forward end of said recess to receive a bulb with its head exposed at said open forward end, a first resilient metal bracket connected to one casing terminal Segment and having a portion extending transversely across said recess to slidably and clampingly engage the shell portion of -a bulb positioned in said recess, said transversely extending portion having a smooth surface which bears frictionally against a substantial portion of the length of said shell terminal, whereby the bulb is frictionally clamped between said transverse portion and said channeled end wall while permitting axial sliding movement of the bulb in either direction, a conductor element connected to the other casing terminal and having a contact portion in position to be engaged by the center contact of said bulb when the bulb is pushed inwardly, and means for actuating said contact portion from the exterior of said housing to force said bulb outwardly, allowing said contact portion to return to its original position away from said bulb center contact.

References Cited by the Examiner UNITED STATES PATENTS 1,520,839 12/1924 Muhlhausen 240-52.5 2,600,418 6/1952 Muller. 2,628,339 2/1953 Werner. 2,645,706 7/1953 Bowl and 24010.65 X 2,982,849 5/1961 Volkerling et al. 240-1065 3,085,150 4/1963 Bautsch 24010.65

FOREIGN PATENTS 536,657 5/1941 Great Britain.

NORTON ANSHER, Primary Examiner.

Patent Citations
Cited PatentFiling datePublication dateApplicantTitle
US1520839 *Apr 18, 1922Dec 30, 1924William C MuhlhausenElectric-torch holder
US2600418 *Mar 25, 1949Jun 17, 1952Ferdinand H MullerFlashlight comprising permanently assembled lamp, cell, housing, and switch structure
US2628339 *Nov 1, 1948Feb 10, 1953Arthur Werner WalterPortable flashlight with storage battery and rectifier
US2645706 *Sep 27, 1948Jul 14, 1953Bowland Charles RCombined mirror and flashlight
US2982849 *Mar 17, 1958May 2, 1961Licentia GmbhCombination flashlight and battery recharging unit
US3085150 *Mar 17, 1961Apr 9, 1963George L BautschFlashlight construction
GB536657A * Title not available
Referenced by
Citing PatentFiling datePublication dateApplicantTitle
US4611264 *May 4, 1983Sep 9, 1986Bradley Morgan BCombination switch light and rechargeable flashlight
US5590951 *Dec 21, 1994Jan 7, 1997Laser Products Ltd.Switch-less flashlights
US5629105 *Nov 24, 1992May 13, 1997Laser Products CorporationFlashlights and other battery-powered apparatus for holding and energizing transducers
US5642932 *Dec 22, 1994Jul 1, 1997Laser Products CorporationCombat-oriented flashlight
USRE40027 *Nov 24, 1992Jan 22, 2008Surefire, LlcFlashlights and other battery-powered apparatus for holding and energizing transducers
Classifications
U.S. Classification362/183
International ClassificationF21L4/00, F21L4/08
Cooperative ClassificationF21L4/005, F21L4/085
European ClassificationF21L4/00P, F21L4/08P